Contingency plan in place for rural water supply

The dried-up Krishna river at Beechupally in Mahabubnagar district.— Photo: G. Ramakrishna

The dried-up Krishna river at Beechupally in Mahabubnagar district.— Photo: G. Ramakrishna  

In view of the fast-depleting groundwater table in the State and the approaching summer, the Telangana government is gearing up to meet the water supply requirements in rural areas.

The Rural Water Supply & Sanitation (RWSS) wing under the Panchayat Raj Department has prepared a contingency action plan for Rs. 303.6 crore for taking up urgent works with regard to repair and restoration of bore-wells, and transportation of water to rural habitations.

Already, Rs. 55 crore has been released from the Calamity Relief Fund (CRF) for 231 mandals in seven districts that has been declared drought-hit. An action plan for Rs. 216.89 crore more under non-CRF funding has been placed before the government, which will be used for augmentation of sources, replacement of old motors, and repairs and replacements of old pipelines and valves, RWS officials informed. Besides, Rs. 8.68 crore from previous year is available with the district collectors, and the government has given administrative sanction for about Rs. 200 crore for attending urgent works. “Wherever the hand-pumps have gone dry, we are planning to hire agricultural wells as there are no crops now. We will check for the portability of water, and chlorinate it before laying temporary pipelines to connect the source to the existing network,” Chief Engineer, RWS, R.P. Nanda Rao said.

Bore-wells and hand-pumps will be deepened and flushed for improving the yields. If all these measures prove futile, or if a village has no accessible source, then water will be transported, Mr. Rao said. A crash programme of 45 days for inspection of drinking water sources and systems has been on since January 20, and preventive and curative maintenance for hand-pumps is being done. Monitoring cells at State and district-levels will be constituted for complaint redress, and a chief engineer is being assigned to two districts for close monitoring. Special Chief Secretary of Panchayat Raj and Rural Development, S.P. Singh, held a video conference with all the district collectors on March 1 and reviewed the situation. There has been 24.2 per cent deficit in rainfall and the groundwater table in the State has depleted by 2.65 meters when compared with the previous year for the same period, a note prepared by the department said. As on date, drinking water is being transported to 706 habitations in Medak, Mahabubnagar and Ranga Reddy districts. About 2,419 private bore-wells have been hired for the supply of drinking water in 1,459 habitations.

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Printable version | Apr 10, 2020 7:21:14 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/contingency-plan-in-place-for-rural-water-supply/article8311912.ece

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